Sunday, July 31, 2011

The fundamentals are the easiest part.

I remember being 18, sitting in a diner in Mobile, Alabama surrounded by people who would become my friends. It was my first week away from home and I was smoking cigarettes (indoors, yes) with people from my dorm.

I realized after I lit my cigarette and started smoking it that I had no idea how to use an ashtray. It looked simple enough. I watched other people and what they were doing. A simple imitation.

I tapped my cigarette so hard that ash sputtered onto the table and the cherry fell out. Nobody else really seemed to notice except for the boy sitting next to me who said, "you're not a smoker, are you?"

To the uninitiated, life seems so complicated. Even the slightest gestures give it away.

And how I felt in that moment is how I've always felt and how I will always feel.

Every day I move forward, knowing that one day someone will take notice, lean in and whisper, "you have no idea what you're really doing, do you?"